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Topic : 12/04 Heroin Twins: The Intervention, Part 3

Number of Replies: 402
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Created on : Friday, December 01, 2006, 03:19:25 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
Dr. Phil continues his work with twin sisters who are addicted to heroin and crack cocaine and were spiraling out of control. A few days into her detox, Sarah begins to emerge from her haze of drug use and painful withdrawal symptoms. Is she committed to the work involved with getting clean? Dr. Phil questions their mother, Cindy, about her own history of alcohol use and how she is sabotaging Tecoa’s sobriety and the health of her unborn baby. Then, Dr. Phil tracks down the sisters’ long-lost stepfather, Perry. They say his disappearance from their lives played a significant role toward their decline into drug use and prostitution. How does Perry explain his absence from their lives, and does his appearance bring closure for Sarah and Tecoa? As the twins begin to take their first steps toward a new life, Dr. Phil informs them that their paths of sobriety will be separate. Will they agree to go to different rehab centers to learn how to stand on their own two feet? Share your thoughts here.

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December 4, 2006, 8:24 am CST

Adoptive Father

I hope he and his wife don't think we all believe they're terrible people.  I might have made the same decision if I was the parent of a toddler while trying to deal with the girls from across the country.  Addiction hurts entire families and sometimes it's hard to know just what the right decision for everyone is.
 
December 4, 2006, 8:27 am CST

Lots of Love

Dear Tacoha & Sarah,
I just want to tell you how touched I am by the choice you two are making. I am no drug user, just a middle class 20 year old raising a beautiful 2 year old boy who I love so much. I have been watching you guys for the past month on Dr. Phil and I am so amazed at the difference in you Sarah from show #1 to now. Seeing you out on the streets was scary. So glad to see you allready looking better. Just to let you both know, you are very beautiful girls when not on the drugs. I do not know either one of you personally but by watching this show, I feel sitting at home, that I am close with you in a way. I am just one of those people that have a big heart and my heart goes out to you. I hope the best for the both of you and Tacoha, I see you being there for your baby and just wait till that little sunshine comes out, the love you will have to give that baby will hit you as soon as you lay eyes on he-she? I hope to hear about you guys soon, will be watching!
With lots of love,
Alia
 
December 4, 2006, 8:34 am CST

Help the unborn baby

Dr. Phil,

 

Please arrange a 3D ultrasound for Tacoa to give her a sense of reality about the baby.  I had one done when I was pregnant with my child and it made real that fact that I had a baby growing in my womb.  For a woman going through the first pregnancy, it can be a little surreal.  Having a 3D ultrasound allowed me to see the face of my unborn child (and he actually looked exactly like the ultrasound when he was born). 

 

I think this may help Tacoa in her decision making (to drink or not to drink, to do heroin or not to do heroin, maybe even to smoke or not to smoke) if she can put a face with the bulge in her belly. 

 

Thanks for the shows.  I learn so much!

 
December 4, 2006, 8:38 am CST

you must study all factors of addiction<>

Quote From: ljlu7654

I've always had an issue with the addiction factor. While some become addicted I think it is a choice at some point that people choose to do drugs or alcohol, and ruin their lives.

I think Dr. Phil is a little hard on the step father, I don't blame him.

. How is this man, the step dad,  at fault for their choices? How is he the cause of their injecting junk into their body. Their choices are theirs, not his.

 I was abused as badly as anyone could be from 5 until I was 13, in every way a girl can be abused, but I never chose drugs or alcohol. It takes a choice, a wrong choice in their case. I feel the step Father did the right thing. Their biological Mother is the real cause, she created their addiction, and doesn't seem to be much of a Mom. ..from her own tendencies, and habits.

I wouldn't want them near my kids either. Their own Mom is as bad as they are.

Perhaps it sounds cold, but they need to show they are clean and sober and warrant trust around the other child..( step fathers child). I don't have any sympathy for junkies and the one sounds drunk with the slurred speach, what is that about?

If I had to protect another child from one who made bad choices I would make the same choices he did, biology or not.

the addict has a gene they were born with,it was handed down to them from there mom or dad or possibly from there grand parents,it can skip a generation, but be passed on to that generations children,but things that happen to people can leed to them drinking and using drugs,unaware of the fact that they are addicts,but once alachol or drugs are ingested the gene is triggered,there for starting the cycle,it would seem the girls felt as they were cast away as you would cast out garbage,the twins will learn all about the addictave gene in rehab i know i did,then they will be given the tools to use inorder to help them stay clean once they return to the real world, once they get home then they have a choice and i pray they chouse to use the tools rehab will give them,the step dad could have went on with hisnew life with out making the twins feel like garbage dont you think? i do, i have step children as well as one of my owne, i no longer am married to my step kids mother but they all know they can come to me with any problem they have, sure i may not be able to solve there problems but i can offer them the insight i may have as a adult and stear them in the proper direction,the twins step dad totaly dumped them when they needed him the most,wouldnt you feel as the twins felt had your parents cast you away as the twins step dad whom was there father figure did to them, i know i would have, and i can assure you if i knew any of my step kids were using i would try with all my heart to get them to stop not just walk away,a simple phone call from even 1200 miles away saying i love and care about you may have made a big differance,

 

 
December 4, 2006, 8:39 am CST

abandonment

I have been following the story of the twins.   My concerns is that Dr. Phil is becoming the male hero that they have never had before.   He is the person that they are looking to for encouragement and they are putting there trust in him.    The father figure they clearly missed.   My concern is that after the show, there will be a void in their life where Dr. Phil stood.  

 
December 4, 2006, 8:55 am CST

A GENE?

Quote From: afraid

the addict has a gene they were born with,it was handed down to them from there mom or dad or possibly from there grand parents,it can skip a generation, but be passed on to that generations children,but things that happen to people can leed to them drinking and using drugs,unaware of the fact that they are addicts,but once alachol or drugs are ingested the gene is triggered,there for starting the cycle,it would seem the girls felt as they were cast away as you would cast out garbage,the twins will learn all about the addictave gene in rehab i know i did,then they will be given the tools to use inorder to help them stay clean once they return to the real world, once they get home then they have a choice and i pray they chouse to use the tools rehab will give them,the step dad could have went on with hisnew life with out making the twins feel like garbage dont you think? i do, i have step children as well as one of my owne, i no longer am married to my step kids mother but they all know they can come to me with any problem they have, sure i may not be able to solve there problems but i can offer them the insight i may have as a adult and stear them in the proper direction,the twins step dad totaly dumped them when they needed him the most,wouldnt you feel as the twins felt had your parents cast you away as the twins step dad whom was there father figure did to them, i know i would have, and i can assure you if i knew any of my step kids were using i would try with all my heart to get them to stop not just walk away,a simple phone call from even 1200 miles away saying i love and care about you may have made a big differance,

 

I hope you do not take this the wrong way....however if the addictive gene is passed on then everyone has a fmily member they could have inheritted it from. Is nto a part of therapy accepting responsibility? We all can choose our addictions. The step dad did the right thing when he laid down the rules, they did not follow them. Girls were drinking and experimenting with pot....but Mom thought it was normal......come on! I have a step-son who got involved with drugs when he began seeing an older girl on drugs. Yes.......there are times when it is so obvious he is using and is so out of control that he must call to get permission before dropping in, because my husband and I do not want our 11 yr. old daughter, or his nieces influenced by him. We once came home to nothing but carpet because he stole everything int he house, including his sister's clothing, and we had to put him under an order not to be on our property without our written permission to visit. The addict hurts everyone who loves he/she. Obviously the man loves them or he would not have come to Dr. Phil to let them blame him. I do not feel he stepped out on them, rather they are looking to blame someone for bad decisions. The only thing I think he could have done differently, and possibly he did, was to contiue to let them know he loves and cares for them and when they are ready to straighten up and not cross his boundaries then they can have a relationship. I applaud you for your recovery!
 
December 4, 2006, 9:20 am CST

i noticed your emotion symbol said mad, maybe if you read this it will help you understand more about the adictave gene<>

Quote From: ljlu7654

I've always had an issue with the addiction factor. While some become addicted I think it is a choice at some point that people choose to do drugs or alcohol, and ruin their lives.

I think Dr. Phil is a little hard on the step father, I don't blame him.

. How is this man, the step dad,  at fault for their choices? How is he the cause of their injecting junk into their body. Their choices are theirs, not his.

 I was abused as badly as anyone could be from 5 until I was 13, in every way a girl can be abused, but I never chose drugs or alcohol. It takes a choice, a wrong choice in their case. I feel the step Father did the right thing. Their biological Mother is the real cause, she created their addiction, and doesn't seem to be much of a Mom. ..from her own tendencies, and habits.

I wouldn't want them near my kids either. Their own Mom is as bad as they are.

Perhaps it sounds cold, but they need to show they are clean and sober and warrant trust around the other child..( step fathers child). I don't have any sympathy for junkies and the one sounds drunk with the slurred speach, what is that about?

If I had to protect another child from one who made bad choices I would make the same choices he did, biology or not.

A gene is the fundamental physical and functional unit of heredity. It is an individual element of an organism's genome and determines a trait or characteristic by regulating biochemical structure or metabolic process.

Genes are segments of nucleic acid, consisting of a specific sequence and number of the chemical units of nucleic acids, the nucleotides. In most organisms the nucleic acid is deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), although in retroviruses the genetic material is composed of ribonucleic acid (RNA). Some genes in a cell are active more or less all the time, which means that they are continuously transcribed and provide a constant supply of their protein product. These are the "housekeeping" genes that are always needed for basic cellular reactions. Others may be rendered active or inactive depending on the needs and functions of the organism under particular conditions. The signal that masks or unmasks a gene can come from outside the cell, for example, from a steroid hormone or a nutrient, or it can come from within the cell itself as a result of the activity of other genes. In both cases, regulatory substances can bind to the specific DNA sequences of the target genes to control the synthesis of transcripts.

In a paper published in 1865, Gregor Mendel (1823–1884) advanced a theory of inheritance dependent on material elements that segregate independently from each other in sex cells. Before Mendel's findings, inherited traits were thought to be passed on through a blending of the mother and father's characteristics, much like a blending of two liquids. The term "gene" was coined later by the Danish botanist Wilhelm Johannsen (1857–1927), to replace the variety of terms used up until then to describe hereditary factors. His definition of the gene led him to distinguish between genotype (an organism's genetic makeup) and phenotype (an organism's appearance). Before the chemical and physical nature of genes were discovered they were defined on the basis of phenotypic expression and algebraic symbols were used to record their distribution and segregation. Because sexually reproducing, eukaryotic organisms possess two copies of an inherited factor (or gene), one acquired from each parent, the genotype of an individual for a particular trait is expressed by a pair of letters or symbols. Each of the alternative forms of a gene is also known as alleles. Dominant and recessive alleles are denoted by the use of higher and lower case letters. It can be predicted mathematically, for example, that a single allele pair will always segregate to give a genotype ratio 1AA:2Aa:1aa, and the phenotype ratio 2A:1aa (where A represents both AA and Aa since these cannot be distinguished phenotypically if dominance is complete).

The molecular structure and activity of genes can be modified by mutations and the smallest mutational unit is now known to be a single pair of nucleotides, also known as a muton. To indicate that a gene is functionally normal, it is assigned a plus (=) sign, whereas a damaged or mutated gene is indicated by a minus (+) sign. A wild type Escherichia coli able to synthesize its own arginine would thus be symbolized as arg=, and strains that have lost this ability by mutation of one of the genes for arginine utilization would be arg+. Such strains, known as arginine auxotrophs, would not be able to grow without a supplement of arginine. At this level of definition, the plus or minus actually refer to an operon rather than a single gene, and finer genetic analysis can be used to reveal the exact location of the mutated gene.

The use of mutations in studying genes is well-illustrated in a traditional genetic test called the "cis-trans test" which also gave the gene the alternative name, cistron. This is a complemetntation test that can be used to determine whether two different mutations (m1 and m2) occur in the same functional unit, i.e., within the same gene or cistron. It demonstrates well how genes can be defined phenomenologically and has been performed successfully in microrganisms such as yeasts. It works on the principle that pairs of homologous chromosomes containing similar genes can complement their action. Two types of heterozygotes of the test organism are prepared. Heterozygotes are organisms with different alleles in the two homologous chromosomes, each of which was inherited from one parent. One heterozygote contains the mutations under investigation within the same chromosome, that is in the cis-configuration, which is symbolically designated ==/m1m2 (m1 and m2 are the two mutations under investigation and the symbol "=" indicates the same position on the homologous chromosome in the unmutated, wild type state). The second mutant is constructed to contain the mutations in such a way that one appears on each of the homologous chromosomes. This is called the trans-configuration and is designated, for example, by m2=/=m1. If two recessive mutations are present in the same cistron, the heterozygous trans-configuration displays the mutant phenotype, whereas the cis-configuration displays the normal, wild type phenotype. This is because in the cis-configuration, there is one completely functional, unmutated, cistron (==) within the system that masks the two mutations on the other chromosome and allows for the expression of the wild type phenotype. If one or both mutations are dominant, and the cis- and trans-heterozygotes are phenotypically different, then both mutations must be present in the same cistron. Conversely, if the cis- and trans-heterozygotes are phenotypically identical, this is taken as evidence that the mutations are present in different cistrons.

In 1910, the American geneticist Thomas Hunt Morgan (1866–1945) began to uncover the relationship between genes and chromosomes. He discovered that genes were located on chromosomes and that they were arranged linearly and associated in linkage groups, with all the genes on one chromosome being linked. For example, the genes on the X and Y chromosomes are said to be sex-linked because the X and Y chromosomes determine the sex of the organisms, (in humans, X determines femaleness and Y determines maleness). Nonhomologous chromosomes possess different linkage groups, whereas homologous chromosomes have identical linkage groups in identical sequences. The distance between two genes of the same linkage group is the sum of the distances between all the intervening genes. A schematic representation of the linear arrangement of linked genes, with their relative distances of separation, is known as a genetic map. In the construction of such maps the frequency of recombination during crossing over is used as an index of the distance between two linked genes.

Advances in molecular genetics have allowed analysis of the structure and biochemistry of genes in greater detail. They are no longer the nebulous units described by Mendel purely in terms of their visible expression (phenotypic expression). It is now possible to understand their molecular structure and function in considerable detail. The biological role of genes is to carry, encode, or control information on the composition of proteins. The proteins, together with their timing of expression and amount of production, are possibly the most important determinants of the structure and physiology of organisms. Each structural gene is responsible for one specific protein or part of a protein and codes for a single polypeptide chain via messenger RNA (mRNA). Some genes code specifically for transfer RNA (tRNA) or ribosomal RNA (rRNA) and some are merely sequence that are recognized by regulatory proteins. The latter are termed regulator genes. In higher organisms, or eukaryotes, genes are organized in such a way that at one end there is a region to which various regulatory proteins can bind, for example, RNA polymerase during transcription, and at the opposite end there are sequences encoding the termination of transcription. In between lies the protein encoding sequence. In the genes of many eukaryotes, this sequence may be interrupted by intervening non-coding sequence segments called introns, which can range in number from one to many. Transcription of eukaryotic DNA produces pre-mRNA containing complementary sequences of both introns and the information carrying sections of the gene called exons. The pre-mRNA then undergoes post-transcriptional modification or processing in which the introns are excised and exons are spliced together, leaving the complete coding transcript of connected exons ready to code directly for the protein. When the central dogma of genetics was first established, a "one gene-one enzyme" hypothesis was proposed, but today it is more accurate to restate this as a one-to-one correspondence between a gene and the polypeptide for which it codes. This is because a number of proteins are now known to be constituted of multiple polypeptide subunits coded by different genes.

Judyth Sassoon, ARCS, PhD

 
December 4, 2006, 9:23 am CST

Adptive father

Quote From: fluffyfat

I hope he and his wife don't think we all believe they're terrible people.  I might have made the same decision if I was the parent of a toddler while trying to deal with the girls from across the country.  Addiction hurts entire families and sometimes it's hard to know just what the right decision for everyone is.

 

I believe he made the right choice. The Father gave them a choice to live w/him, and they (((chose)) the wrong way. He didn't abandon them as I see it. They chose the Mother and drugs/alcohol, and the life they had, including getting pregnant twice now??

 

. Why is everyone blaming him? He offered to let them come and live with him. They continued to choose drugs, why should he bring that to his new family?

 

As for them feeling abandoned?? When my Dad found me and adopted me, his wife did also. When my Dad died suddenly, she never even wanted me at his service, and I didn't know why.  She adopted me and became my Mother and,  I thought she loved me, and still she blew me out of her life using her daughter in law to do it. She never even told me why, and I never did drugs or alcohol, she gave me a reason according to these girls thinking, right.

 

 So the abuse/abandonment excuse is just that, an excuse. How convenient for them to blame the Father. He offered them choices, they chose, now they blame him? It's a cop out,  biology or not. I could easily have become a drunk, had I chosen that path. I didn't chose that, and I still got dumped by my Fathers wife, my adoptive Mother. I held it together, they had each other and a Mom, if I can make it alone, they could have too. It's hard to blame the dad, that's all.

 
December 4, 2006, 9:34 am CST

yes a gene read this maybe it will help you understand<>

Quote From: new2unme

I hope you do not take this the wrong way....however if the addictive gene is passed on then everyone has a fmily member they could have inheritted it from. Is nto a part of therapy accepting responsibility? We all can choose our addictions. The step dad did the right thing when he laid down the rules, they did not follow them. Girls were drinking and experimenting with pot....but Mom thought it was normal......come on! I have a step-son who got involved with drugs when he began seeing an older girl on drugs. Yes.......there are times when it is so obvious he is using and is so out of control that he must call to get permission before dropping in, because my husband and I do not want our 11 yr. old daughter, or his nieces influenced by him. We once came home to nothing but carpet because he stole everything int he house, including his sister's clothing, and we had to put him under an order not to be on our property without our written permission to visit. The addict hurts everyone who loves he/she. Obviously the man loves them or he would not have come to Dr. Phil to let them blame him. I do not feel he stepped out on them, rather they are looking to blame someone for bad decisions. The only thing I think he could have done differently, and possibly he did, was to contiue to let them know he loves and cares for them and when they are ready to straighten up and not cross his boundaries then they can have a relationship. I applaud you for your recovery!

Common gene mutation linked to drug addiction
22:00 10 June 2002
NewScientist.com news service
Gaia Vince
A common mutation in a gene that controls the breakdown of the brain's natural cannabinoids contributes to drug abuse and addiction, new US work suggests.

Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute, California, questioned more than 1000 people attending a medical clinic on their drug use, including use of nicotine and alcohol. They found that people who reported abusing illegal drugs were four times more likely to have two copies of the mutated gene than people without drug or alcohol problems. About 3.7 per cent of the people in the study had this double mutation, the team says.

The gene encodes an enzyme called fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). This enzyme is responsible for inactivating endogenous cannabinoids - which act on the same neuroreceptors as the psychoactive component of marijuana. Previous work has suggested that the enzyme is involved in reward and addiction pathways in the brain. The common mutation in the gene causes a build-up of natural cannabinoids.

Roger Pertwee, professor of neuropharmacology at Aberdeen University, suggests that people with the mutated gene might need to take a greater amount of a particular drug to achieve the same "high", because the neural pathways the drugs act on are blocked by endogenous cannabinoids. But because these people take more, they are more likely to class themselves drug abusers.

Genetic factors are estimated to account for 40-60 per cent of the risk of drug abuse and addiction.

Reduced inhibitions
DNA analysis showed that two copies of the mutated gene showed up in 16 per cent of people who declared abusing street drugs or alcohol, but in a smaller percentage of people addicted to alcohol alone. Just four per cent of those with no drug or alcohol problems had two copies of the gene.

"Although these findings are provocative in that they offer a potential link between functional alterations in the endogenous cannabinoid system and a predisposition to illegal drug use, alternative interpretations are also possible," the team write in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Pertwee agrees: "The fact that the correlation has only been found for illegal drugs and the mutated gene suggests that a higher concentration of endogenous cannabinoid in the brain may have the effect of reducing a person's inhibitions about taking illegal drugs in the first place," Pertwee suggests.

The Scripps team hopes the work might lead to a test to identify people at high risk of drug abuse. Jack Sipe, who led the research, told New Scientist: "We are currently working with human subjects to determine if the FAAH 385 mutation is linked to any specific drugs of abuse, such as marijuana, cocaine, and opoids, and, therefore, if the mutation could be a risk factor for individuals at higher risk for drug abuse or dependence."

Journal reference: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (DOI: 10.1073/pnas.802235799)

 
December 4, 2006, 9:45 am CST

maybe, maybe not!

Quote From: lwoelfel

Dr. Phil,

 

Please arrange a 3D ultrasound for Tacoa to give her a sense of reality about the baby.  I had one done when I was pregnant with my child and it made real that fact that I had a baby growing in my womb.  For a woman going through the first pregnancy, it can be a little surreal.  Having a 3D ultrasound allowed me to see the face of my unborn child (and he actually looked exactly like the ultrasound when he was born). 

 

I think this may help Tacoa in her decision making (to drink or not to drink, to do heroin or not to do heroin, maybe even to smoke or not to smoke) if she can put a face with the bulge in her belly. 

 

Thanks for the shows.  I learn so much!

i read on the website though, under Tecoa's profile, that this is NOT Tecoa's first pregnancy.  she has a son from before who the biological father has custody of now, b/c she abandoned him after he was born to go back on the streets and back to a life of drug use.  and now, in her second pregnancy, she is drinking, smoking, and has done heroin at six months along.  i want to have hope for her, too, but i am starting to wonder if she cares at all about this baby, since she is giving it up for adoption, maybe she simply doesn't care how he/she turns out after birth, since she won't be responsible for him.  i hope that isn't the case, but all the evidence seems to indicate this. also, i saw on the webcam for part three, that Cindy (her mother) begged her to stop smoking until the baby was born.  Tecoa flatly refused and said she could not promise that.  and then she LAUGHED when her mother became angry with her.  she LAUGHED, as though her mother's concern for the health of her baby was some sort of joke.  what kind of a person would do that?  i have to wonder about this girl's morals.  i have hope that she learn to live drug free, but still, she comes across as being ENTIRELY self-centered to me.  and that is so sad for that infant she is carrying.
 
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